What is our technology stack at the Coffee Shop? Well let me tell you, it has changed a lot in the last three years. First of all, when we asked our RCS Influencers what their technology stack is, we wanted to know what software they were using for their business and how it all works together. For Vickie and me, it has been a challenging road to find and utilize the right combination of software for our business and we are still working on it.
I share that because we are technically a technology company, but we are also a publishing company and, in the end, Vickie and I always say, we are in the roofing industry. So, as you look at the multiple hats that all companies in roofing wear it means finding several solutions to get the right fit. For contractors, as many of our RCS Influencers have noted, it takes time.
One of the interesting challenges we have is working with the dual systems of Microsoft and Apple. It is so frustrating when they do not communicate well - especially with meeting notices. So, then someone says “just use Google calendars” but now that is three systems. Where does it end?
RoofersCoffeeShop® is a virtual company with our team living across the United States so we have to look at how we can all communicate without going crazy. We have adapted to make it work for both Microsoft and Apple, focusing on cloud-based systems like Basecamp (project management), Google Docs and Dropbox. That stack is just about communication and projects.
Then we look at the website and a whole new stack of software comes into play including our new custom website software, Google Analytics, Mail Chimp and Survey Monkey. It is a lot to manage and we have an amazing team that keeps it going in the right direction under the leadership of Vickie Sharples. But it has taken three years to find the right combination and we are still tweaking it.
My advice overall is to constantly look at what is working and what is not working. If software systems do not play well together, figure out how to make a change so it works. We can waste an incredible amount of time trying to put a square software in a round hole. Taking the time to make changes to your stack to make it work for your employees is critical for your business and sanity.
Heidi Ellsworth is owner of HJE Consulting Group and a partner in RoofersCoffeeShop.com. See her full bio here.